Garden Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe

Toasted bread cubes, chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, basil, and mozzarella in a bowl for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.
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Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe in a bowl with fork.  It has Toasted bread cubes, chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, basil, and mozzarella.  Serving bowl in back

Is there really a better tasting salad that one made up of bread?  This Panzanella Salad Recipe with fresh garden veggies is absolutely delicious and becomes a complete meal with the addition of chicken.  You get toasty bread, bright tomatoes, cool and crisp cucumber, herby basil, and creamy mozzarella, all tossed in a sweet and tangy vinaigrette.  It really is perfection.  I love it for lunch, but it would be a great Summer dinner as well.  And the best part is that you don’t need to wait for your bread to stale, you can simply toast it in the oven for 15 minutes, toss it with the other ingredients, and enjoy.

Toasted bread cubes, chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, basil, and mozzarella in a bowl for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.

COLD DINNERS FOR EASY PREP-AHEAD DINNERS

This Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe is a great prep-ahead dinner for taking with you on the go or for an easy no-cook dinner.  Cold meals are not just for lunches, they can really help with family dinners on busy nights.  This is especially true in the Summer when the temps are hot.  

Here are some of my favorite cold dinners:

Toasted bread cubes, chicken, tomatoes, cucumber on a fork over a bowl of Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

Nothing special for this one! Just a large sheet pan (I use a 17×11) for toasting the bread in the oven.

And mincing garlic is made super easy with a Garlic Press.

PREP-AHEAD STEPS FOR THIS PANZANELLA SALAD RECIPE

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are steps you can prepare ahead to save time on busy nights! (See the full recipe below) 

The first thing you want to do is cook and shred the chicken. You can save time by buying already roasted or grilled chicken. The deli will often have grilled chicken and bigger stores have rotisserie chickens. Both are great as you can simply shred them and you’re all set.

If you’re doing it from scratch, you can season with salt and pepper and either grill it on high heat for 5-6 minutes on each side or roast in the oven according to the recipe instructions.  Cook until internal temp reaches 165 F degrees. 

NOTE: to save time, the instructions have the bread going in the oven with the chicken for the last 15 minutes of the cooking time.  However, you can cook the chicken entirely for 20 minutes at 400 F degrees.  Then separately toast the bread at 300 F degrees for 15 minutes.

For the bread, I like to first get the pan ready so that as I cut the bread, I can drop the cubes directly into the pan.  Drizzle 2 tablespoons of Olive Oil onto a large sheet pan. Using a brush or back of a fork, spread the oil around the pan.

Cube the bread loaf and spread the cubes out on the oiled sheet pan and toss to get a little bit of oil on all sides. Sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes in a 300 F degree oven.

Knife cutting crusty bread into cubes for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe.  It's absolutely delicious.

Toasted bread cubes on a sheet pan for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe.  It's absolutely delicious.

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, cut it into bite-size pieces.

Half grilled chicken breast cut into cubes with knife sitting next to it on cutting board for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe.  It's absolutely delicious.

Cut tomatoes into bite-size cubes, slice the cucumber into half circles, finely dice the red onion, and mince the garlic. Cut the cheese into bite-size cubes.

In a small bowl, add the Dijon, Oil, Vinegar, Honey, red onion, Salt, Pepper. Whisk together with a fork or small whisk until completely blended together.

Whisk mixing red onions, dijon, honey, oil, salt, and pepper in a bowl for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe.  It's absolutely delicious.

ASSEMBLE 

To a large bowl, add the toasted bread, chicken, tomato, and cucumber. Tear half of the basil leaves into the bowl. Drizzle half of the dressing over and toss to combine. Taste for dressing and more as desired. 

Toasted bread cubes, chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, and basil in a bowl for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe with fresh garden veggies is absolutely delicious.

Add the cheese and give a light toss. Tear off more basil for garnish and enjoy!

RECIPE FAQS

What type of bread is best to use?

I love using a baguette or other long crusty bread.  The crust tends to stay the crispiest, so I like to have a lot of it in this recipe.  You can also use a boulle or other whole loaf bread that you need to cut yourself.  You do not want to buy pre-sliced breads.  They are sliced for sandwiches and therefore, will be too thin to hold up with the dressing.  The result will be a soggy bread salad.   

Does the bread need to be stale?

Nope!  It can be fresh, day old, or a few days old.  You do not need to leave it out to stale in order to use it.  If it’s fresh or a day or so old, but still soft, then simply follow the recipe instructions.  When the bread is older and has gotten hard, as long as you can still cut it, then follow the instructions.  If not, you can quickly run cold water over the bread, wrap it in aluminum foil and bake it in the oven for 10 minutes to steam and soften.  Then follow the instructions in the recipe. 

Can I dress the salad ahead?

Only if you like soggy bread.  This really cannot be dressed ahead.  However, you can do everything else, even toast the bread up to an hour ahead.  Just leave the bread in the pan until your ready to mix the salad and serve it.

ENJOY!  😍 Carrie

Toasted bread cubes, chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, basil, and mozzarella in a bowl for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.

Have you tried this recipe? If so, please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ star rating in the recipe below! I love to hear your feedback and your rating helps others to find this recipe. Thanks so much!

Garden Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe

Is there really a better tasting salad that one made up of bread?  This Panzanella Salad Recipe is absolutely delicious and becomes a complete meal with the addition of chicken.  You get toasty bread, bright tomatoes, cool and crisp cucumber, herby basil, and creamy mozzarella, all tossed in a sweet and tangy vinaigrette.  It really is perfection.  I love it for lunch, but it would be a great Summer dinner as well.  And the best part is that you don't need to wait for your bread to stale, you can simply toast it in the oven for 15 minutes, toss it with the other ingredients, and enjoy.

Course Main Course, Salad
Cuisine Italian
Keyword bread salad, chicken recipe, Chicken Salad, panzanella
Prep Time 25 minutes
Assemble 5 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Chicken

  • 12 ounces Chicken Breasts boneless and skinless
  • 1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper

Bread

  • 12 ounces French baguette or other crusty bread loaf
  • 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground black pepper

Other Salad Ingredients

  • 2 Vine Tomatoes
  • 1 English Cucumber, medium
  • Basil leaves
  • 6 ounces Fresh Mozzarella

Dressing

  • 1 Tablespoons Red Onion, finely diced
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons White Wine Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoons Honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper

Instructions

Prep-Ahead Steps

  1. ROAST CHICKEN. Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees. Put the chicken breast on a baking sheet and rub with a drizzle of Olive Oil, salt and pepper. Bake in the oven bottom rack for 10 minutes at 400 F degrees. Then turn the oven down to 300 F degrees and continue to cook for another 15 minutes or until internal temp reaches 165 degrees F. (NOTE: the bread in the next step will be added to the oven as well for this last 15 minutes).

  2. TOAST BREAD. While the Chicken cooks for 10 minutes, drizzle 2 tablespoons of Olive Oil onto a large sheet pan. Using a brush or back of a fork, spread the oil around the pan. Cube the bread loaf and spread the cubes out on the oiled sheet pan and toss to get a little bit of oil on all sides. Sprinkle with a sprinkle of salt (about 1/2 tsp) and black pepper (about 1/4 tsp). Bake in the oven top rack for 15 minutes in the 300 F degree oven with the chicken.

    Toasted bread cubes on a sheet pan for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.
  3. CUT CHICKEN. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, cut it into bite-size cubes.

    Half grilled chicken breast cut into cubes with knife sitting next to it on cutting board for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.
  4. PREP VEGGIES. Cut tomatoes into bite-size cubes. Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise, then slice into half circles. Finely dice the red onion. Mince the garlic.

  5. PREP CHEESE. Cut the cheese into bite-size cubes.

  6. MAKE DRESSING. In a small bowl, add the Dijon, Oil, Vinegar, Honey, red onion, Salt, Pepper. Whisk together with a fork or small whisk until completely blended together.

    Whisk mixing red onions, dijon, honey, oil, salt, and pepper in a bowl for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.

Assemble

  1. MIX SALAD. To a large bowl, add the toasted bread, chicken, tomato, and cucumber. Tear half of the basil leaves into the bowl. Drizzle half of the dressing over and toss to combine. Taste for dressing and more as desired. Add the cheese and give a light toss. Tear off more basil for garnish and enjoy!

    Toasted bread cubes, chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, and basil in a bowl for this Chicken Panzanella Salad Recipe. It's absolutely delicious.

Recipe Notes

  1. To save time, the instructions have the bread going in the oven with the chicken for the last 15 minutes of the cooking time.  However, you can cook the chicken entirely for 20 minutes at 400 F degrees.  Then separately toast the bread at 300 F degrees for 15 minutes.
  2.  

Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema

Grilled Shrimp Tacos in corn tortillas on a plate with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema. On the side are bowls of cotija cheese, crema, salsa, and cilantro leaves.
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Grilled Shrimp Tacos in corn tortillas on a plate with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema.  On the side are bowls of cotija cheese, crema, salsa, and cilantro leaves.

Welcome to Summer on a plate!  These Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema are fresh, bright, and delicious.  Succulent shrimp are seasoned with chili powder and cumin and then grilled to perfection.  Then they are layered into corn tortillas with creamy Refried Black Beans, a bright, sweet and savory Mango, red pepper, and jalapeno salsa.  Finally, as if this couldn’t get any better, creamy Chipotle Crema and tangy Cotija cheese are added. 

You can grill the shrimp outdoors during the Summer or cook indoors for a taste of Summer anytime!  This is a 30-minute family dinner you will love!

SHRIMP FOR FAST & HEALTHY DINNERS!

Shrimp is incredibly easy and FAST to cook for dinner, which makes it an ideal busy weeknight dinner option.  It only takes 5 minutes to cook shrimp in a frying pan or skillet or grill, about 2 minutes on each side.  You can also bake it in the oven for 10 minutes or less.

It’s also very versatile with a mild flavor, so it goes well in so many different recipes.  It tastes create hot or cold so works well in salads, pastas, rice dishes, and these Grilled Shrimp Tacos!

So, let’s talk about the health benefits of Shrimp! Shrimp is low in calories, yet provides a high amount of protein and healthy fats.  It also gives a variety of vitamins and minerals, as well as omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.  According to this article from Healthline, the primary antioxidant in shrimp, astaxanthin, “may help protect against inflammation by preventing free radicals from damaging your cells.  It has been studied for its role in reducing the risk of several chronic diseases.”

Here are some other delicious and easy-to-cook shrimp dinner recipes:

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

For kabobs, you do need skewers. I like metal ones vs. wood so that you don’t have to worry about them burning up. You also can wash and reuse metal ones. Flat skewers are also great so that the food doesn’t spin around. You can grill it on one side, then flip the skewer and the food flips too vs. rolls. Finally, LONG skewers are best. Look for 14″ or longer so that whether you want to grill a little or a lot of food, you have the space on the skewer. Here are some skewers that I really like!

I also like to use a large sheet pan (I use a 17×11) to place the skewers as I build them.

PREP-AHEAD STEPS FOR GRILLED SHRIMP TACOS

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are steps you can prepare ahead to save time on busy nights! (See the full recipe below).

The salsa can be made a day in advance.  Any more than that, you risk it getting mushy.  Dice the mango and red pepper; add to a bowl. Finely dice the jalapeño; add half to the bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of the cilantro and juice of a lime. Mix. Add salt to taste.

Diced mango, red pepper, scallions, jalapeno, and cilantro on cutting board for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

Hand squeezing lime half over bowl of diced mango, red pepper, scallions, jalapeno, and cilantro for Grilled Shrimp Tacos
For the crema, add the sour cream, 1 tablespoon cilantro, and salt to a separate bowl. Add the juice from the other of half of lime. Mix to combine.  This can be made ahead up to 5 days and stored in the fridge.

Sour Cream, cilantro, and chipotle in adobo in a bowl for for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

Chipotle Lime Crema for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

In a tiny bowl, mix the chili powder, cumin, and salt for the shrimp.

Chili Powder, Ground Cumin, Garlic Powder, and salt in a bowl for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

If you are grilling the shrimp on an outdoor grill, skewer them. If you are grilling them on an indoor grill, you may not need to do this step. Drizzle over, then rub the shrimp with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning to coat all sides. Store in the fridge covered until ready to cook.

Hand seasoning raw shrimp on skewers for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

Wrap the tortillas in aluminium foil for warming on the grill or in the oven.

Finally, make the Refried Black Beans for layering on the tacos!

COOK YOUR GRILLED SHRIMP & FINISH THE TACOS 

Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees. Add the wrapped tortillas to the oven for 5 minutes or until warmed through.
If needed, warm the refried black beans on low heat in a covered pot on the stove or in the microwave.

For the shrimp, preheat the grill to Medium-High heat. Cook the shrimp for 2 minutes, then flip them and cook for another 1-2 minutes max. Remove from the grill to a plate.

Shrimp skewers grilling on outdoor grill for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

To serve in warmed tortillas, add 2-3 tablespoons of refried black beans, 3 shrimp, Mango salsa, Cotija Cheese, and Chipotle Lime Crema. Garnish with cilantro. Enjoy!

Grilled Shrimp Tacos in corn tortillas on a plate with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema. On the side are bowls of cotija cheese, crema, salsa, and cilantro leaves.

 

RECIPE FAQS

Can frozen shrimp be used for this recipe?

Yes, you can use fresh or frozen shrimp.  The key is to ensure that they are cleaned of the digestive tract along the back and that the tail is pinched off.  You could cook this recipe with the tails on, but it’s more difficult to eat as you have to bite off the tail and discard.  It’s really a personal preference.  If you use frozen shrimp, you want to thaw them in the fridge overnight or under running (not standing) cold water.

How do you remove the tails from raw shrimp?

To remove the tails from raw shrimp, hold the shrimp in one hand and place fingers from the other hand on the start of the tail shell and pinch to push out the shrimp meat.

Hand pinching off the tail from a raw shrimp with more shrimp on the plate for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

Tail removed from a raw shrimp with more shrimp on the plate for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

Can I cook the shrimp in a frying pan or oven?

Preheat the pan on high heat.  Add a teaspoon or more of olive oil and then the seasoned shrimp to the pan. Cook the shrimp for about 2 minutes on one side and then flip and cook for only 1 more minute. Remove the shrimp to a plate.

How early can the shrimp be cooked?

The shrimp in this recipe can be served hot or room temperature.  Therefore, you can cook the shrimp up to 1 hour ahead.  Any more than 1 hour, you really need to refrigerate the shrimp to prevent bacteria.  Shrimp is not a great contender for reheating. They are so delicate that they can easily get overcooked and then get rubbery. This is what happens when you reheat them. If you do need to reheat them, do so on very low heat in the stove and remove from the heat immediately when they are warm.

ENJOY!  😍 Carrie

Grilled Shrimp Tacos in corn tortillas on a plate with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema. On the side are bowls of cotija cheese, crema, salsa, and cilantro leaves.

Have you tried this recipe? If so, please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ star rating in the recipe below! I love to hear your feedback and your rating helps others to find this recipe. Thanks so much!

Grilled Shrimp Tacos in corn tortillas on a plate with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema. On the side are bowls of cotija cheese, crema, salsa, and cilantro leaves.
5 from 1 vote
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Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema

These Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema are fresh, bright, and delicious.  Succulent shrimp are seasoned with chili powder and cumin and then grilled to perfection.  Then they are layered into corn tortillas with a bright, sweet and savory Mango, red pepper, and jalapeno salsa.  Finally, as if this couldn't get any better, creamy Chipotle Crema and tangy Cotija cheese are added.  You can grill the shrimp outdoors during the Summer or cook indoors for a taste of Summer anytime!  This is a 30-minute family dinner you will love!

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword grilled shrimp, shrimp, shrimp skewers, shrimp tacos, tacos
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

CHIPOTLE LIME CREMA

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1-2 teaspoons Minced Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce (or Ground Chipotle Pepper)
  • 1 tablespoon Cilantro
  • 1/2 Lime, juiced
  • ½ teaspoon Salt

MANGO SALSA

  • 1 Mango, diced
  • ½ cup Red Pepper, diced
  • ½ -1 Jalapeño, seeded
  • 1 Scallion
  • 1 tablespoon Cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Lime, juiced
  • Salt to taste

OTHER

  • 1 pound Raw Shrimp size 26-30/lb, cleaned and tails removed
  • 1-2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ½ teaspoon Chili Powder
  • ½ teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt
  • 12 Corn Tortillas
  • 1/2 cup Cotija Cheese
  • 1 cup Refried Black Beans (See Notes for Recipe Link)
  • 1 tablespoon Cilantro, chopped

Instructions

Prep Steps

  1. PREP CILANTRO. Rough chop 3 tablespoons cilantro (1 for salsa, 1 for crema, 1 for garnish).
  2. MAKE CREMA. Add the sour cream, 1 tablespoon cilantro, and salt to a small bowl. Add the juice from half of a lime. Mix to combine.

    Sour Cream, cilantro, and chipotle in adobo in a bowl for for Grilled Shrimp Tacos
  3. MAKE SALSA. Dice the mango and red pepper; add to a separate medium bowl. Finely dice the jalapeño; add half (or more!) to the bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of the cilantro and juice of a lime. Mix. Add salt to taste.

    Hand squeezing lime half over bowl of diced mango, red pepper, scallions, jalapeno, and cilantro for Grilled Shrimp Tacos
  4. Creamy, rich, smokey, and delicious refried black beans recipe in a bowl with a few black beans and chopped cilantro sprinkled on top. On the counter are tortilla chips in a bowl.
  5. PREP TORTILLAS. Wrap the tortillas in aluminium foil for warming on the grill or in the oven.
  6. PREP THE SHRIMP. In a tiny bowl, mix the chili powder, cumin, and salt for the shrimp. If you are grilling the shrimp on an outdoor grill, skewer them. If you are grilling them on an indoor grill, you may not need to do this step. Drizzle over, then rub the shrimp with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning to coat all sides. Store in the fridge covered until ready to cook.
    Hand seasoning raw shrimp on skewers for Grilled Shrimp Tacos

Cooking Steps

  1. WARM TORTILLAS. Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees. Add the wrapped tortillas to the oven for 5 minutes or until warmed through.
  2. WARM BEANS. If needed, warm the refried black beans on low heat in a covered pot on the stove or in the microwave.
  3. GRILL THE SHRIMP. Preheat the grill to Medium-High heat. Cook the shrimp for 2 minutes, then flip them and cook for another 1-2 minutes max. Remove from the grill to a plate.
    Shrimp skewers grilling on outdoor grill for Grilled Shrimp Tacos
  4. To serve in warmed tortillas, add 2-3 tablespoons of refried black beans, 3 shrimp, Mango salsa, Cotija Cheese, and Chipotle Lime Crema. Garnish with cilantro. Enjoy!

    Grilled Shrimp Tacos in corn tortillas on a plate with Mango Salsa & Chipotle Crema. On the side are bowls of cotija cheese, crema, salsa, and cilantro leaves.

Recipe Notes

  1. Shrimp – you can use fresh or frozen shrimp for this recipe.  If using frozen, place in the fridge to thaw out 24 hours ahead of cooking.
  2. Refried Black Beans – see my each recipe for this!